19 December 2012
The Reality Check is a new initiative which aims to convene regularly a Review Group to contribute to the formulation of a more effective policy towards the EU’s Eastern neighborhood countries.
The Review Group includes domestic and international analysts, practitioners, diplomats and policy makers.
The first informal meeting on Belarus was held in Vilnius...
21 August 2012
Two individuals arrested by the KGB in connection with the teddy bear stunt released in Belarus. Change.org - an international web site platform to sign petitions - blocked in Belarus. New initiatives for small small businesses, people with disabilities and human rights activists launched in Belarus.
15 August 2012
July did not start very happily for Alexander Lukashenka. At the Independence Day speech on 4 July he praised the great political and economic situation of Belarus, but subsequent developments undermined both.
The teddy bear affair and rejection of his visa application to attend the London Olympic Games are among the issues likely to have made Lukashenka embarrassed and frustrated, and...
17 July 2012
Although trade turnover between Poland and Belarus indicates positive trends, numerous problems remain unsolved. Treatment of Polish minority in Belarus and wide spread human rights violations are just a few of them. Nevertheless, both Poland and Belarus have a few serious reasons to establish positive relations.
Warsaw is driven by prestige and even more so by the geopolitics of...
27 June 2012
This month seven more European states joined the EU sanctions against Belarus. As a result of this year's new extension of restrictive measures target not only officials and politicians but also businessmen. It means that this politicised problem involves clear economic underpinning.
The history of relations between Belarus and the...
19 June 2012
Among those surrounding Lukashenka there are people waiting for changes. They should get clear signals that their position will be rewarded and appreciated, because the fate of the revolution, evolution or other change that will inevitably come to Belarus at а crucial moment may depend upon them.
Getting sulky does not make sense, it is better to look for the weak links in the chain...
31 May 2012
Putin is visiting Belarus today on his first trip abroad since his re-election as Russia's president. Alexandr Lukashenka is trying to capitalise on the worsening relations between Russia and the United States caused by the anti-missile defence issue.
It is unlikely that the Belarus government will manage to secure further expansion of Russia's economic support. However,...
28 May 2012
Belarus Digest continues to interview former ambassadors to Belarus on their work in Belarus. Brian Bennett served as the ambassador to of the United Kingdom in 2003-2007. He recently published a book on the country "The Last Dictatorship in Europe: Belarus Under Lukashenko".
17 May 2012
Last week, some opponents of the Belarusian regime called for a demonstration outside the Belarus National Theatre's performance in London. In fact, that theatre has nothing to do with political persecutions and actually represents a part of Belarusian culture disliked by many in the Belarusian regime. Should it be regarded as a part of the Belarusian regime nonetheless?
10 April 2012
Ambassador Kenneth Yalowitz served as the US ambassador to Belarus between 1994 and 1997. He arrived in Belarus a few months after Alexander Lukashenka was elected president and witnessed Belarus sliding from a relative democracy into authoritarianism. Ambassador Yalowitz agreed to share his thoughts about what was going with Belarus in 1990s and the current situation.
09 April 2012
Last month for the first time ever, the EU introduced sanctions against a number of companies, which supply oil refinery products to EU countries. It means that there is still a possibility of expansion of painful economic sanctions against Lukashenka's regime.
There is no dominating opinion in the assessment of the possible effects of the EU sanctions'...
29 March 2012
Although formally a member of the Eastern Partnership (EaP), unfortunately Belarus does not participate in any of its programmes. It is excluded from visa liberalisation, the EaP flagship initiatives, and bilateral track programmes: for example, the Small and Medium-Size Enterprise Funding facility with a ...